Visa Categories

Business Class

Investors, Entrepreneurs and Self-Employed applicants

Business Class

For people who want to start a business in Canada 

The Business Immigration Programs seek to attract experienced business people to Canada who will support the development of a strong and prosperous Canadian economy. The main programs are listed below but do note that there are potentially other business options via the Provincial Nominee Programs.

Quebec Immigrant Investor Program (QIIP)

The intake of permanent selection applications for the Investor program is temporarily suspended. Although there are caps and quotas, candidates who can demonstrate knowledge of French through a standardized test can submit an application at any time, once the program has re-opened.

QIIP applicants will need to:

  • have legally acquired net assets of at least C$2,000,000
  • have management experience for at least two years in the five years preceding the application for selection.
  • intend to settle in Québec
  • sign an investment agreement with a financial intermediary (broker or trust company) authorized to participate in the Investor Program
  • make a five-year term investment of C$1,200,000 with Investissement Québec - Immigrants Investisseurs Inc.
  • obtain an attestation of learning about democratic values and the Québec values.



This category is actually quite narrow and is only for applicants who have:

  • taken part in cultural activities or athletics at a world-class level or
  • been self-employed in cultural activities or athletics

To be eligible as a self-employed person, you must:

  • have relevant experience (as noted above)
  • intend and be able to be self-employed in Canada
  • meet the selection criteria for self-employed people
  • meet medical, security and other conditions.

Selection criteria includes the following:

  • experience
  • education
  • age
  • language abilities
  • adaptability

Start-Up Visa

Canada’s Start-up Visa Program targets immigrant entrepreneurs with the skills and potential to build businesses in Canada that:

  • are innovative
  • can create jobs for Canadians
  • can compete on a global scale

You MUST be able to prove that your business is supported by a designated organization. In order to be eligible you MUST have a qualifying business that you created that meets ALL of the following, at the time you get a commitment from a designated organization:

  • each applicant holds 10% or more of the voting rights attached to all shares of the corporation outstanding at that time (up to 5 people can apply as owners)
  • AND
  • applicants and the designated organization jointly hold more than 50% of the total voting rights attached to all shares of the corporation outstanding at that time

You must have a letter of support from one of the designated organizations or else your application will be refused. Designated organizations are business groups that are approved to invest in or support possible start-ups through the Start-up Visa Program, and are either Designated Venture Capital Funds who will agree to invest a minimum of C$200,000, OR Designated Angel Investor Groups who will need to agree to invest a minimum of C$75,000.